Studying abroad — in Portland

“Where are you from?”
It is a question that can start conversations easily. I am from South Korea and have studied science courses at PSU for about three years. I have heard this question a lot as well. When I answer, I recognize again myself that I am a foreigner in America.
International students must learn to speak English effectively because they face environments that force them to use English. It is more natural than learning language in a classroom. You confront a cultural shock and do not have friends or family who you can rely on. Sometimes, you would like to hang out with a person from your country because you feel more comfortable and homey. That tempts me to socialize with Koreans.
On the other hand, the point of studying in this country is to speak English and experience American culture. I would not learn much about America if I did not socialize and learn from Americans. I know many Korean students who did not experience enough of America and its people when they studied here.

Have you ever had this kind of experience? Do you make an effort to meet international students at PSU?




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